Thursday, December 27, 2012

Let us join hands

I am angry.

I don't want people telling me I should think twice before visiting Delhi because it is not safe for me.  I don't want to be 'cautious' and 'know how to protect myself' when I'm travelling alone at night.  Just because I am a girl.

And I don't really want to get into the Delhi vs rest of India debate.  Let us all agree that whether it is Delhi or Ahmedabad, no one should be raped.

And the rapists/sexual offenders deserve harshest of punishment.  I don't know how much faith I have in the judiciary, but the government of India has set up a committee for finding out ways to provide speedier justice and enhanced punishments.  They are taking in public comments by January 5. 

Twitter is full of angry comments asking for the severest punishments, ranging from public beheading to castration to stranger things like tattoo on forehead.  People rejoiced when they read that the criminals were fed poop in the jail by inmates. An eye for an eye? I don't know.

I am not sympathizing with the criminals, but I cannot desensitize myself completely.  While my prayers are with the victim (or the survivor or whatever alias you want to give her), I cannot stop myself from wondering what could be done about the whole incident, not just getting her justice, but for each one of us, who is at a risk of being sexually abused.  [I am not talking only about women here, women, men, children - what about marital rape? Are we ever going to recognise that as a crime at all?]

A friend suggested an online database of sexual offenders.  A quick search led me to this. It is the public website for registered sexual offenders in US. And no, we do not have that mechanism in place in India. Why not? I don't know.  The people who run the country are busy creating uproar in parliament.

Few questions came up while discussing the same with a few people I know.

Here are some views on the same.

How will an online registry help?

Well, it public access to the data, which includes the criminals' photograph and every other detail, it may act as a deterrent.  That such a publication of details may affect their current and future personal and professional relationships, may act as a deterrent.  People will be more alert and aware.

How to keep a track?

Unlike US, we do not have SSN that can be used to keep a track, but then, isn't here where the UID project comes useful? But if you go through the US website for offenders, you'll see you could also search on basis of first name and last name.  I guess the tracking with UID could be more useful for law enforcement agencies, but as civil citizens, something would be better than nothing. Keeping track is important to check whether the criminal is a repeat offender.  Because no matter how much we want all the rapists to be given the severest punishment of death, it is not going to happen. They will be released, and to ensure there is no relapse, there should be a regular tracking of such people.

What about the ones who are reformed and want to be rehabilitated? 

Yes, so the above list could be revised and such names could be removed.  Remember, this is a public listing, and not for law enforcement agencies.  Law enforcement agencies need to keep their record permanently, but, such names can be removed from public database to ensure social stigma doesn't affect them till the end of time.  [social boycott and other punishments, though seem proper, are not practicable. Severest punishment doesn't mean we stop treating other people as humans, even though their crime may be unpardonable.]

What about steps to prevent the crime?

A lot has been said about this. Pepper spray, self defense techniques, keeping people informed about your whereabouts, and being extra vigilant when travelling alone.  But what about catching the perpetrators before such crimes happen? I'm sure some sort of psychology goes through their minds when they choose to commit such crimes.  Why not profile the criminals and try and identify people who are more likely to commit crimes (not just rapists, but also murderers, paedophiles) and get them to seek help? How about we actually give mental illness the seriousness it deserves?  I don't know, I'm just throwing in ideas.

What about the criminals' family members? Why should they suffer?

No one should be punished for someone else's crime.  Hence, such list should exclude personal details about the person who is registered.  It will be unfair if the family has to suffer because of him/her.  It must be ensured that the details of other family members are not disclosed.

What about rehabilitation of the survivors?

Yes, so life changes for them and their family.  Coping mechanism should also include regular counselling.  Whether the incident attracts media glare or not, their life has been altered.  But nothing unconditional love and support cannot help them overcome.  But along with that, some kind of counselling to help them fight their fears instead of repressing the memories.  To ensure that they feel like survivor and not a victim.  To enable them to walk on the streets with their head held high and not feel ashamed or violated.  I'm sure there are some things in place, but why not publicise the measures so that those who have suffered, muster up enough courage to speak up? Unless a crime is reported, it cannot be curbed, and it wont be reported if the people who have suffered do not have faith in the system.

How to go about getting things done? Or at least try our bit?

That is a good question.  I'm pretty much clueless.  I don't know what will work, but I'm pretty sure outraging over Twitter wont.  I'm not saying you should not outrage, but the hollow outrage is now making me kind of sick.  So, here's the thing, as I said above, the government has started committee, and has asked for public comments and suggestions.  Details here.  They've said we could send in our suggestions to  So, I'm sending across the post I've written above, along with the suggestions I get in comments or you could mail me too.

I don't know how to take it further.  I'm also skeptical of online petitions.  If you were to write emails, who should you write to? How do you follow up? I also intend to send a copy of the mail to Narendra Modi, Chief Minister of Gujarat. Again, I'm not sure how much further it would go.  Or should you just send the mails and wait for the government to take steps? I'm open to all ideas, and would be glad to give support if anyone has any better ideas.  Let us try and take things in our hands, for a change.

And one more thing, irrespective of the outcome of whatever I wrote above, there is one thing I am determined to do.  Next time I see anyone being abused, I am raising a voice.  I'll call in the cops and I'll create a ruckus.  I'm not being a silent bystander anymore. Before I ask others to act on something, I am going to promise myself I will do something that I strongly believe in.

Thank you for reading.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Date A Girl Who Tweets

Date a girl who tweets.  Date a girl who spends her time tweeting instead of meeting people.  She has a problem with poor internet connectivity.  Date a girl who has a list of people she likes to stalk on Twitter.

Find a girl who tweets.  You'll know because she has a smile on her face as she looks into her laptop.  She will be the one frantically pulling down to refresh, the phone, also called Tweeting Device.  You see the weird chick clicking pictures of books in a book shop? Twitpic or it didn't happen.  They can never resist the urge to let the world know they're reading.

She's the girl waiting in that coffee shop, clicking picture of the heart on froth of your cappuccino.  If you take a peek at her mug, she would have thrown the spoon and sugar sachets messily to add character to the picture.  She might glare at you if you interrupt her as she checks in on Foursquare, as most girls who check in on Foursquare do.  Ask her, CCD or Filter Kaapi, #youprefer?

Buy her another cup of coffee.

Let her know what you really think of Sagarika Ghose.  She if she got through first episode of The Newshour.  Understand that if she says she understands Deepak Chopra, she is saying it to sound intelligent.  Ask her if she loves Poonam Pandey or will be Poonam Pandey.

It's easy to date a girl who tweets.  Compliment on her change of display picture, and favourite her tweets.  Give her the gifts of retweets.  Give her #FFs, RT and ♥ ♥ ♥.   Let her know that you understand the importance of stalking.  Understand that she knows the difference between tweets and real life, but by god, she's going to make her life like around Twitter(as soon as Twitter gives option to archive your tweets).

She has to give it a shot somehow.

Lie to her.  Call her celebrity once in a while, and name her in "must follow" lists in magazines and newspapers.  It will not be the end of the world.

Fail her. Because a girl who tweets knows that boring tweets will lead to people unfollowing her.  Because a girl who tweets knows that things come to and end, and will unfollow you eventually. That you can always follow back again. Through another id. And troll.  That Twitter is meant to have a troll or two.

If you find a girl who tweets, keep her close. Her sentences will be of 140 characters.  When you find her awake at 2 am, tweeting away to glory, threaten her to disconnect her internet connection.  You may lose her for a couple of hours, but she will thank you when she rediscovers life.  She'll talk like the people she follows on Twitter are around her, because for a while, they always are.

You will propose on a Tweetup.  Or during an NH7 Weekender.  Or Metallica concert.  Or very casually next time she's sick.  Over Skype.

You will smile so hard you will wonder why your heart hasn't burst and bled all over your chest yet.  You will live tweet the story of your lives, have kids with strange names and even stranger tastes. She will introduce your children to the internet memes and kitteh gifs, maybe on the same day.  You will walk the winters of your old age together and she will tell you the trending topics under her breath while you think of a witty pun.

Date a girl who tweets, because you deserve it.  You deserve the girl who can give you the most colourful life imaginable. If you can only give her monotony, and stale hours and half baked proposals, then you're better off without her. If you want the world and a parallel universe, date a girl who tweets.

Or better.  Stay #ForeverAlone. LOLJK. I'm cute.

In response to Date a girl who reads

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Temple Run

A month back, mother suggested I join them on a pilgrimage to Somnath and Dwarka.  I'm not sure if I'm religious and I don't think I need to be standing in front of an idol to pray.  In times of desperation, I've closed my eyes, looked up and prayed.

But I had visited the said places as a kid, and it had been 18 years since that visit, and I had faint recollections of the temples.  So I wanted to visit, just to see if the memories of the temples and the reality are the same.

Spotted on the Ahmedabad - Rajkot Highway. Stobary is SecC.

 The road to Somnath, especially once you enter Junagadh is like a roller coaster ride. Looks like nothing much has changed there since Mohammad Ghazni first attacked Somnath over a 1000 years ago.

Somnath temple is one of the twelve Jyotirlings and I must say it is beautiful. It is situated right on the coast and makes Shiva look like the coolest God ever to have a place of worship located at such a cool place. 

Right outside the temple. The Sunset.
  The best thing about Somnath temple (as like most Shiva temples) is that it is very peaceful, and generally clean.  I am not afraid I'll accidentally step on cow poop, like one does in Krishna temples.  And no crazy darshan timings, so the crowd is usually controlled. Of course, the Aarti was very chaotic and so much crowd, that I could almost hear the idol tell me, 'आतंकवादियों से डर नहीं लगता, भक्तों से लगता है।'

For me, my personal high point was reciting the Shiv Tandav Stotra.  Raavan was a genius to compose such an awesome piece of work.  Of course, I don't know the entire one, but was happy with reciting first two stanza. :D

The Temple
 But you know, one of the main reasons I wanted to visit Somnath was the South Pole pointer. There is a column there, with an arrow crossing through it, which points south, saying there are no obstructions on the straight line, all the way to the South Pole.  How incredibly fascinating is that! Though I am petrified of water bodies, I wanted to just sit there and look into the ocean forever.  The ocean looked calm at one point, and it became violent the other. I saw 3 birds fly low, and followed them as far as I could see, and my eyes gave up.  The ocean looked like one magnificent beast.

Porbandar highway. Yes, coast right next to the highway.
Next day we left for Dwarka.  On our way, we stopped by at one temple at Bhalkateerth.  As per the legends, this is the place where Lord Krishna died.  That makes me wonder, what if the ones we worship as Gods are actually just human beings with extra ordinary strength? Wonder if people will take me seriously if I declare myself as God? Hmm.

Anyway, the highway ran parallel to the coast.  Beautiful, beautiful it was.  Also, so many windmills. Windmills are fascinating, just like lighthouses.  And I was so excited to see boats with sails in the ocean.  They looked like straight out of my high school drawing book.  (if you enlarge the picture above, you'll see a boat on the horizon)

A bridge over the ocean.
Dwarka was also fascinating.  As per the legends, old Dwarka was the dwelling place of Krishna, and it is now submerged under ocean.  Even if it is a story, the fact that the temple was built hundreds of years ago gave me goosebumps.  So many people would've walked over the same floor, and so many more will walk over it in years to come.  (yeah, I always get such thoughts when I visit places which are hundreds of years old)  So much thought process must have gone into making such intricate work on the walls, and all this was done even when they knew they could not instagram their creation! Wonder what must be their motivation!

And then, somewhere I lost one of my slippers in the ocean water.  I hope the coast guards at Pakistan get hold of them and keep them as my prasad of some sort.

The most interesting moment for me in Dwarka temple was when some people climbed the top, and brought down the current flag to hoist a new one.  And the moment the flag unfurled itself flying high I stood there with my mouth wide open and said a silent prayer.

Oh, and did I mention the cows? One cow was sitting right in middle of temple, oblivious to the surroundings.  She did not care how crowded the place got, but she was just sitting there, chilling, communicating telepathically with her other buddies sitting across the temple, waving their tails occasionally.

One non-descript Shiva temple, which is in middle of ocean, and you have to walk across a bridge to reach there.  Apparently, sometimes, the bridge gets covered with ocean water too during tides and all.
Next day, we left for home, but before that, visited another Jyotirling, Nageshwar. (Apparently, the location of the same is controversial, so not sure if it is considered one, but whatisthere)

And then, eight hours of long drive later, we were home.  Tired, sleep deprived and slipper-less. Oh, and tanned. And happy.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Of childhood memories and changes

As per the legend, I was loved by all when I was a kid. Elder cousins and aunts (esp dad's youngest sister who got married when I was 2 yrs old) recall my awesomeness at family gatherings all the time.

One of the many tales is about a visit to this mini zoo like place called Sundarvan near our house.  My aunt would take us all cousins there quite often on Sundays and apparently, the the caretaker got so used to seeing us there that he once let us in the place at 6 am to have a look at a bunch of dancing peacocks.  I, of course, have no memory of peacocks, but I do remember seeing a snake show there and how incredibly slimy it felt to touch the Rat Snake.  Guess, I will never get used to touching a reptile.

I remember feeding mamra (puffed rice) to the geese and once there was also a red panda in there.  Oh, and did I tell you about the porcupines? And the Indian cobra?

But then, I grew up.  School happened.  There was no novelty in visiting the Sundarvan.

And then, last year, history repeated itself.  My aunt took us all to Sundarvan again.  The reason was my cousin's daughter, Dhyani. It was wonderful visiting the same places with the same set of us as grownups. But that visit was more of a trip back to memories.

Today, when my cousin called that Dhyani insisted I take her to Sundarvan, I could not say no.  So it was the two of us, having a look at the animals and birds and tried to answer her questions like, why are the geese eating mamra (yep, things haven't changed much in Sundarvan) and why are the snakes inside a glassed cage!  I wondered if I had similar questions for my aunt too? Did she make up stories, or did she struggle explaining a 2//3 year old kid logic?

Some things remained same.  Geese still feasted on mamra, bajrigars still went berserk, snakes still looked slimy.  But things had also changed.  A generation had changed.  I was the one taking care of someone, and not the other way around.

We got back home, she had some food, and since cousin had still not got back, I sat with her on the swing, and when she started feeling sleepy, I held her in my arms and she fell asleep.  Her tiny hands around my neck, trusting me that I will not let her fall off.  After about twenty minutes of being on the swing, I brought her inside the room to put her on the bed.

The minute I put her on the bed, she woke up and gave the most adorable smile.  She was still sleepy so after softly moving her hands over my eyes, she fell back asleep. 

This reminded me of the another legendary tale from the past.  My aunt had always complained how she would sit with me on the swing and try to get me to sleep after 30 minutes, and moment she would put me on the bed, I'll wake up. :P She still hasn't forgotten her hourly exercise on the swing with me clinging on to her and not forgiven me for waking up immediately either. :P

And the swing also made me little sleepy, so I dozed off for while in the afternoon, and woke up when Dhyani came up to me and softly said, "Ninu, why are you sleeping?" :)

Guess, history repeats itself.

But you know, if and when I have kids, I wish to have a daughter.  I'll take her to all the places I went to as a kid, because I was kind of awesome as a kid.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Koi No Yokan

So came across this article about words you should use.

Among other words, the word "Koi No Yokan" was the word that caught my eye. :D Apparently, it's a Japanese (Japs are the weirdest, but I think they're pretty awesome too. I mean, think of origami! ♥) word and it means 'the sense upon first meeting a person that the two of you will fall in love'.

I think that is a fabulous idea. :)

Reminded me of my own post on something similar less than a month back.

Wonder if Koi No Yokan works even if you've just interacted with the person virtually and not 'met' him. :)

I don't see why not. :)

Sunday, December 2, 2012


The only drama happening in Gujarat these days is the upcoming Legislative Assembly elections.  Today on my way home from an aunt's place I saw men, who looked like commandos, carrying rifles, casually taking a stroll on one of the busiest road of Ahmedabad.

Gujarat is on high alert, not just because of terror threats, but also because election has created a war-like scenario. It's a scary sight, though.

Like any other self respecting Gujarati, I have my view on the elections too.  I'm not saying who should win, but I desperately hope and pray that neither Congress nor the farce called Gujarat Parivartan Party win.  I don't know which one is better, but I do know I want to choose the lesser of the two evils.

Now, I'm not sure how much of what I write could get me into trouble, and I am sure if I get arrested under section 66A, my father is not going to bail me out, because I kept threatening that I'm not going to vote for Modi.  And I don't want to go to jail. :(

But few things wrong and right about the elections:

1.  Gujarat Parivartan Party's symbol is a bat. A cricket bat.  It's funny because when Keshubhai Patel loses, I hope Trash of Ind.. errr. Times of India publishes the headline, "Keshubhai out for a duck"

2.  Talking of Keshubhai Patel, the biggest problem of Gujarat Parivartan Party is that the face of the party is Keshubhai Patel. (please don't get me arrested, I'm cute)

3.  BJP rebels have joined Congress, Congress rebels have joined BJP and BJP and Congress rejects have joined Gujarat Parivartan Party. 

4.  While Madam is taking her own time to decide who is the Chief Minister candidate for Congress, the people in Congress are fighting a battle of their own.  Some bigwigs like Narhari Amin are not given tickets, and the disgruntled dude refuses to campaign for Congress anymore.  And that's not it, the party is so badly divided, we don't know who face of Congress is.  (which is funny, because even Gujarat Parivartan Party has Keshubhai Patel even though it is the funniest thing about the elections) I say why wait for 2014, bring Rahul Gandhi now! :D

5.  While BJP advertisements are focusing on what they have done in last 10 years, Congress ads are focusing on BJP ads and making fun.  Basically, Congress is acting like the standup comics on Twitter - mocking everything, without any content. Here I will choose to not even mention Gujarat Parivartan Party ad.

Anyway, I'm not sure how much more I can write without getting arrested. (dude, seriously, even though the Satellite Police Station is all ISO certified and all that shit, I don't want to spend nights in a lockup - who will come to bail me out?)

So, I'll end it here, and just hope that 20th December comes soon and the nation can move on to new topics.

And I can prepare a roadmap for my 2014 campaign.  I hope you all vote for me.

#Modi4CM and #Nirwa4PM

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Interpretation of Nightmares

So everyone gets them. Few days back when I woke up panicky about continuous nightmares, a friend told me, not to worry, because nightmares don't come true, dreams do.  It was kind of soothing.  Nightmares started fading after I wake up.

But then, the kind of dream that came true is little disturbing.  I don't know how to put it without across.  So I had songs being played in my dreams.  Hindi songs, of course. Which is surprising because I'm not much of a music person.  Anyway, the song in context was this: 

It's weird, because I have no idea why I was singing this song.  I hadn't seen Shaan lately and I bet even Mazhar Khan wouldn't be singing this in his grave. (Yes, the actor in this song is Mazhar Khan, who was once married to Zeenat Aman, and I have no idea why I know all this trivia)

Now, entire last week I kept waking up and singing this song and was shocked out of my wits when I switched on the tv last night and they were showing shaan with precisely this song being played. I was like, zomg, my dream has come true.

Ok, stop thinking my dreams are silly, because I'm about to tell you my last night's dream before I forget completely.

So I was back to school.  No idea why because today, I'm just glad school is over, no wishes to live those school days again.  So yeah, I was back to school, and I could remember the classrooms and corridors perfectly as if I am actually there.  The small room where our Gujarati and Sanskrit sir would sit correcting our papers trying hard not to give us passing marks.  The library where I predicted Hrithik Roshan would be better than Abhishek Bachchan (you see, both had their first movies launched recently).  So I saw a bunch of my classmates sitting there gossiping, like always.

But.. I was walking towards another room.  Which was class 8 classroom. (Right across boys' loo, and it smelt ewww)

And I was wearing a Batman costume, with a cape and all.  One guy in the class was wearing Pope's costume.

And then, someone asked me what I was doing, I think it was our Geography teacher.  She asked me what was I doing wearing such outrageous clothes.  I simply said, "I'm the hero you deserve, but not the one you need".  Classmates' jaws reached the floor and I put the cape around my face and ran out.

This is bizarre on so many levels.  But I guess that's what dreams are, right?  Now if only I had a personal dream interpreter.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Welcome home, Baby V!

Baby V
When we got to know my cousin's wife was expecting their second child, we were all excited.  No cynicism in the world can dampen celebration of a new life.  Their first child is a girl, my niece, who keeps making her presence felt on this blog sometimes.

Some said if they get a boy child, their family would be perfect.  The parents, however, wanted a second girl child because my cousin said he would never be able to love his son the way he loves his daughter.

For us, those who are emotionally stable, a healthy child was all that we prayed for.  The baby was due in December end, and everything was smooth.  Till my bhabhi went for a regular check up which showed the baby was lagging growth by 3 weeks.  She was advised high protein diet.  Apparently, the ayurvedic medicine she took on a relative's insistence brought her haemoglobin to 7.  I'm not sure what the connection is, but I don't know how can one be so stupid not to keep her doctor in loop about the medicines they take.

Anyway, so she was on bed rest because of lack of protein, iron and high blood pressure.  She went for few more tests the next day, and doctor asked her to get admitted.  She was 7 months pregnant.

While we all tried to think positively, deep down we were all worried.  Next 2 days were crucial.  Her pressure refused to stay normal and doctor decided to bring the baby into the world. 2 months premature.

Here is where another drama unfolds.  Bhabhi's parents get hold of "best timings" for delivery such that the baby would survive.  They also come up with "worst timings" which said the baby was doomed.  They even had the audacity to take it up with the doctor.  Doctor, in a filmy way, said, if I go by your timings, and if anything were to happen to baby and/or mother, would you take responsibility? He then walked away into the operation theatre and went ahead with the surgery.

The baby was immediately moved to the neonatal centre in the city.  No one, except my cousin had seen the baby till now.  The neonatal care people took a photograph for us and that is the photo we have seen.

Every day we prayed for her speedy recovery and quick discharge, because no one wants their baby kept in the hospital.

And then, on her 10th day, doctor called us.

Her heart had stopped beating, and she was on life support.  The 10 day old baby was on life support.

Remember how filmy doctors day it's all in God's hands? The doctor said the exact same words.  "Pray for her life, it's all up to God now."  And we prayed.

I am not sure of the power of alternate healing techniques, but we tried it all. She was not a feotus.  She had already breathed the air we breathe, seen the world, whatever bit she did.  That thing on ventilator was a child.

And after 48 hours, we got the fabulous news that she is taken off ventilator and is stable and reacting well to medication.  The Diwali, was truly a happy one.  The brightest diya on my rangoli this year was for her.

And then, things went smooth.  She was on Kangaroo Care, and started responding well.

Today, after 23 days, she is home. We have to take precautionary care because she would be more prone to infection than even normal infants, but we are glad she is home.

I've not seen her yet. 

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Now, till I declare myself as God (shh, there is still time for that), for all practical purposes, I am a human being.  And as a human being, my body is bound to have minor ailments.

One of the most common ailments is headache.  Now, the medical expert in me (lulz) tells me that it is because of cold (yea, have this cold thing since childhood) but despite that I like to Google symptoms, since I don't visit the family doctor, mostly because he doesn't think I'm ill. :(

Now, few years back, I discovered the scariest place on the internet.  WebMD.  At first I was amused and fascinated on how many ailments exist in the world and said a little prayer that I don't suffer from them.  But then, I discovered the Symptom Checker.

Every time I get headache, it is usually accompanied with pain in the neck, or back or sometimes pain in the right profile of my face.  Pop in one combiflam and I'm as good as new.  But then, the first time I entered the symptoms, one of the diagnosis that came up was. Paralysis stroke. :|

Enough to scare me at 3 am and leading me to a sleepless night. Or nights.

But then, it kind of became an addiction of sorts.  Just knowing the worst possible scenario and how that I'm not dying immediately gave me a thrill in a way. (shhh, I don't need to see a shrink, not yet)

And then, since past few days, I was having a pain in the right side on the ribs (i think - i am not that great a medical expert, ok?)  It would pain a little every time I'd yawn or take a deep breath.  According to WebMD, I may have fractured a rib, and might be bleeding internally.  In fact, I think (I'm very intuitive that way) I have pulled a muscle while stretching myself, and I think I'm just gonna spray some relispray and sleep well and wake up feeling as good as new. (yeah, my favourite phrase these days is as good as new. ok, not these days, just for this post)

In the mean time, I insist WebMD comes with a warning of sorts, that the diagnosis is not for the faint hearted, because if they are to be believed, I have already died. Twice.

PS: ZOMG. Just realised this is my 100th post! ZOMG. HUGS TO ALL!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

On destiny

Things happen for a reason. Okay. I've decided not to try and manipulate.

If things are meant to happen, they will.

I may sound silly for believing in the concept of love and romance, but for someone whose heart still melts at Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, I'm not going to give it up.

Bah. Life was much simpler when I was 2. All I had to do was eat, poop, sleep and burst into peels of laughter every few minutes.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

To wait or not to wait

So it has been bothering me all night last night and all day today. But I had exam to write and could not let it come my way. But I have to write now, just send out a message to the universe.

So when you feel that something/someone is just right and pray fervently to god for that to happen, should you go about taking steps to try and make it happen or should you wait for that sign from the universe and see if it will take its own course.

Say you come across someone who you think is perfect for you. Should you go ahead and express your feelings or wait for him to start feeling similarly for you? What if you have never met that person and have known for less than a month? Do you trust your instincts and feel right about it? Or should you be apprehensive in trusting your own heart?

How much longer should you know the person to know that person well enough? My parents still don't know me well enough. Hell, even I don't know myself well enough. Is this criteria even valid before you decide that someone is The One?

I don't know. I'm tired of misreading the signs universe has been sending me. What if this is again one of those times?

For a change, I'd like a clear answer, not signs.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Where top secret meetings are held

How To Pee

It is an unwritten rule, that whenever we girls are out in group, we never go to the loo alone.  Just like men bond at bars, we bond in "washrooms" (because toilet is too dirty sounding word).  In fact, sometimes, even if we don't want to pee, we just go to the loos, because, we just want to chill. 

Some girls discuss how one girl (who is obviously left out from the washroom group) was a bitch, and was wearing wrong kind of footwear, and loud make up.  I once encountered this one girl, who said one girl looking like Rakhi Sawant.  Turns out the girl who got called Rakhi Sawant was the girl her ex was currently dating.  And no, no, I do not eavesdrop loo conversations.  These are just snippets you hear if you keep your ears open.

And how can you forget photographs? According to this made up statistic, 98% of all pictures taken in loo, are taken in public loos.  Because the mirrors are bigger, lights are brighter and some loos in fancy restaurants/hotels are too awesome to not take pictures in.  I wonder how long before people start creating Facebook fanpage of their own "Loo Photography".

Then there are the employees.  Like of the mall.  They are there for their hourly break, because, they can.  Recently, I overheard a conversation which left me little worried.

Lady 1: Tum sab kutti ho.
Lady 2: Hum kutti to tu kutti ki maa.
Lady 1: Main roz idhar kapde badalti hoon.
Lady 3: Tu phir bhi kutti.

They turned to look at me, as I froze in anticipation of a girl fight breaking out, and laughed.

Lady 2 (to Lady 1): Jaa kutti. Madam ko jaane de.

As I turned to leave, Lady 1 said, "byeeeeee" as if she was my long lost friend. :|

But then, there are girls who go to the loo all by themselves.  Like the girl who is out on a date. She'll go in to do some last minute make up patch up, and ensure her hair are well behaved.  And how she looks when she smiles in a certain way.  Mirrors in "washrooms" are magical that way. But this activity is no fun, because you can't spend 10 minutes in the washroom and not get the date suspicious of you taking a dump in a public loo.  Scary shit, literally. HAHAHHAHA.

But most of all, women go to the loo in group because it's just too boring to go to the loo all by yourself.

PS: The above picture was clicked by a friend in a loo in Bangalore. 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

मन से रावण जो निकाले राम उसके मन में है।

     कैलाश परबत पे शिवजी शाम की चाय की चुस्की भर रहे थे। उनके गले पर लिपटा हुआ सांप शिवजी के कान में बोला "स्वामी, आज माँ को दुर्गा माँ का रूप लेने पे मजबूर न करें", और हलके से मुस्कुराया।
     "मैं सब सुन रही हूँ", पार्वतीजी बोली। उन्होंने गुस्से से देखा और खुद ही हंस पड़ी।
     "स्वामी, आपको क्या लगता है, जो राम और रावण के बीच हुआ, वोह होना चाहिए था?", पार्वतीजी ने शिवजी को पूछा।
     "यह कैसा सवाल है, प्रिये?" शिवजी मुस्कुराये।
     उनको पता था माँ यह सवाल क्यूँ कर रही है। कल विजयादशमी है, और कल के दिन, उन्होंने दुर्गा माँ का रूप धारण करके महिषासुर का विनाश किया था।  और कल ही के दिन, विष्णुजी के सातवे अवतार, श्री राम ने भी रावण नाम के दानव का नाश किया था।  अगर सरल शब्दों में कहें तो बुराई पे अच्छाई की जीत हुई थी।
  लेकिन, माँ को यह हरगिज़ मंज़ूर नहीं था की मर्यादा पुरुषोत्तम राम ने अपनी पत्नी सीता की अग्निपरीक्षा ली थी।  उनके अनुसार किसी भी स्त्री का अपमान माफ़ी के पात्र नहीं है, फिर चाहे वोह भगवन ही क्यूँ न हो।
     "रावण तो आपके परम भक्त थे ना?" पार्वतीजी ने पूछा।
     "प्रिये, आपको ऐसा क्यूँ लगता है की रावण निर्दोष थे? यदि श्रीराम से गलतियां हुई है, तो रावण की भी भूल थी।  वह मेरे भक्त ज़रूर थे, लेकिन उनको नारायण से मिलना था। उनको ज़िन्दगी और मौत के बीच का यह सेतु पार करने के लिए उन्हें विष्णुजी के हाथो ही अपनी मौत मंज़ूर थी। इसी मोह में उन्होंने पूरी लंका जला डाली।  क्या यह सही था? क्या आपका अहम् इतना बड़ा है की आप सही और गलत के बीच में फर्क ही न कर पाये? रावण का सबसे बड़ा दुश्मन श्रीराम नहीं, उनका खुद का अहंकार था।"
     "और यह बात आपसे बेहतर और कौन जान सकता है? आखिर महिषासुर मर्दिनी तो आप ही है", शिवजी हलके से मुस्कुराये।
     "आप से तो जीतना मुश्किल है।"
     "लेकिन आप से तो बड़े बड़े हार जाते है", शिवजी ने शरारती मुस्कान दी।
     "हमेशा सचाई की ही जीत होती है", शिवजी के गले पे लिपटा हुआ सांप बोला, और सब हंस पड़े।

PS: No disrespect meant.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Kaun Banega Draupadi Ka Pati?

@SrBachchan Chaliye, hum aur aap milke khelte hai, Kaun Banega Draupadi Ka Pati! cc. @DrawPaddy

@Dhrishtadhyumna @SrBachchan, kripya shaant ho jaiye, I'm the host of this show. plz.

@YoYudi checked in to Kampilya on @foursquare with @B4Bheem, @iArjun, @Sahdev and @Lukan (we're disguised as Brahmans, lulz)

@B4Bheem dudes, check out that fish.

@YoYudi @B4Bheem, anuj, I've told you not to swear. also, since when did you start using the F word?

@iArjun @YoYudi bhratashri, he's talking about the statue of that revolving fish (which looks creepy) @B4Bheem

@RajaDrupad Baith Jaiye Please, everyone, a huge shoutout for @DrawPaddy, my daughter, Draupadi and my son @Dhrishtadhyumna

@RajaDrupad Also, @Dhrishtadhyumna will be the host for tonight, and NOT @SrBachchan

@Dhrishtadhyumna Ok, guys, you've got to pierce the eye of the revolving fish by looking at it's reflection in water. Easy peasy. *smirks*

@2ryodhan I call dibs on the fish.

@karna @2ryodhan #lulz

@SrBachchan @2ryodhan @karna, afsos, galat jawab.

@DrawPaddy @SrBachchan, dude, seriously? @2ryodhan b****, pls.  @karna *insert casteist comment about Suta Putra*

@LordKrishan @Balarama, bro, where are the Pandavas?

@Balarama @LordKrishna, no clue, bro, I was hoping for some fireworks.

@LordKrishna @Balarama, don't look now, but look behind Shishupal (he's so annoying), the Pandavas have come disguised. What is this, spy movie?

@iArjun @YoYudi, bhratashri, I have an "I" in my handle, and I can pierce that fish's eye. Let me go, plz.

@YoYudi @iArjun, go get 'em, tiger.

@DrawPaddy, zomg, *MY HERO*.

@RajaDrupad, *damn, where the hell are those Pandavas, I was rooting for that Arjun fellow.* @Dhrishtadhyumna, unka peechha karo. kuchh to gadbad hai.

@YoYudi @MataKunti We've got Bhiksha, Ma.

@MataKunti @YoYudi, Yeah, divide it amongst your brothers and share. Sharing is caring, remember?

*awkward silence*

@YoYudi @MataKunti Err.. I meant @iArjun won @DrawPaddy in her swayamvar.

@MataKunti @YoYudi Abeyaar, couldn't you tell me clearly?

@YoYudi @MataKunti Issok.  Your word is moar sacred than anything else.

*Meanwhile Krishna, Balarama, Dhrishtadhyumna and Drupada reach the place*

@RajaDrupad whateeseet? Is this buy one get 4 free scheme?

@Vyasa @RajaDrupad Shaant, gadadhaari Bheem, shaant. #Lulz (hey, @B4Bheem, no offence, mate).  This is all possible, and not against Dharma at all (1/n)

@Vyasa @RajaDrupad So basically, in her previous birth, @DrawPaddy prayed to @AwesomeShiva and asked for 14 characteristics in her husband. (2/n)

@Vyasa @RajaDrupad But all qualities cannot be found in one dude, @AwesomeShiva told her she'll marry five men in her next birth who will have all (3/n)

@Vyasa @RajaDrupad These qualities.  Basically, she'll become a virgin every morning when she takes a bath.  Not weird at all.  Now, c'mon (4/n)

@Vyasa @RajaDrupad Let the party begin! (5/n)

@RajaDrupad @Vyasa if you say so.

@SrBachchan Ooooh. Hooter baj gaya.

*and rest, as they say, is history*

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Sur Kshetra

When I was a little girl, I wanted to participate in Close-up Antakshari where the only constant variable was Annu Kapoor.  (Kids these days won't even know who Annu Kapoor is *shakes my head*)

Even as a child I was obsessed with reading the credits.  One name that featured constantly in Antakshari (and later Sa Re Ga Ma - man, Sonu Nigam looked like anorexic Falguni Pathak) was Gajendra Singh.

Why is this trivia important? Because, today while everyone else was having a life on a Saturday evening, I was home flipping channels and came across this show, "Sur Kshetra", which was conceived and directed and etc by Gajendra Singh.

Few things I noticed about this show:

1.  Annu Kapoor (and his female co-hosts) were replaced by Ayesha Takia, jo akele hi apne mazboot erm.. *cough* kandho *cough* pe is show ka bojh uthathi hai. Today she was wearing something in bubblegum pink colour which was all the way till her toes, and her heels seemed to be transparent, so she was like lady Yudhishthir, walking 4 fingers above ground, almost in air. *applause*

2.  So basically, the show is like a yudh of songs/singing between India and Pakistan, where Indian teams's captain is Himesh Reshammiya (JAIMATADILETZROCK) and Pakistani team's captain is Atif Aslam.  #AtifAslamIsHot

3.  I am not sure how the show progresses, because I don't think I'm gonna follow it (one time watch was also too much #AtifAslamIsHot) but one thing I can tell you, the participants are better singer than Indian Idol contestants. (even I can sing better than Indian Idol contestants and I am besuri even in chorus).

4.  Indian Idol se yaad aaya, Asha Tai is also a judge (?) or some sort of umpire on this show, along with Abida Parveen and Runa Laila.  (I must admit I had to google to find out Runa Laila's name.  Apparently she's from Bangladesh - guess she's the third umpire, then) Also, #AtifAslamIsHot

5.  So this show is part of the Aman Ki Asha thingy, where we are trying to talk about peace between the two countries - India and Pakistan.  Of course, music knows no boundaries, and 80% of songs on iPods on India come from, what better than a music reality/talent show to show how we love each other.

6. Now, each contestant comes and promises to win the show, and how Insha'Allah jeet will be of their country, and in between Himeshbhai pouts (somebody give him a chapstick already - or ask him to keep his lips hydrated) and growls how this is war.  Quite an irony, considering the theme is peace. But, #AtifAslamIsHot

7.  Now, Asha Tai, seriously? WHAI? if a contestant sings her song, she will immediately give her own performance after that, just to steal the contestant's thunder. Matlab, why? And she has anecdotes about her sister all the time.  Even I have an elder sister, do you see me talk about her all the time? No. #AtifAslamIsHot

8. Abida Parveen.  I love her hair.  They are so curly and fluffy, I bet she doesn't use a pillow while sleeping.  Listen, I don't know much about her songs - so if you want to know, google, or youtube, or k.

9.  And one thing that caught my eye was, how everyone was busy telling the person from the other country how we love each other.   Okay, so we all have idiots and awesome people in both the countries (I'm not even talking about Bangladesh because, hey, Runa Laila is only the third umpire, not a participant, and is usually quiet whenever India vs Pakistan debate comes up)  Atif Aslam, who is hot, tells everyone how everyone in Pakistan loves Indians, and how Pakistanis have a huge heart and all.  And then Asha tai quips how India has always been kind and generous for Pakistani artists.  Of the 1.5 hours, 2 hours are spent talking how both the countries are awesome and how we all want peace. Maybe we should just post Asha tai and her sister and all these people on the border and make them sing.  Or probably convert the border to miniature cricket stadiums.  Or both. Because obviously, talking has failed. Anyhoo, #AtifAslamIsHot

10.  All this is okay, but when is Ajmal Kasab going to be hanged?


Thursday, September 13, 2012

When things are just not right

So I am back with an emo post which basically is full of incoherent and repetitive thoughts.

Sometimes, I don't really have a reason why I'm feeling sad/upset.  It could be the weather, or my faith in being in denial could be shaking.  It usually lasts for a few hours before I am back to being my usual self, spreading happiness around. #Lulz.

I sometimes also like to believe in fate/destiny, and that you meet the people you meet for a reason.  It could also be the staple diet of hindi movies that I have grown up in that could've led me for my unwavering faith in destiny.  But, is it a wrong thing to do? But then, most of the people I've met are through the virtual world of internet.  And they are wonderful people.

Some I've met in real life too, and some are still just a Gtalk id or Twitter handle.  Some have become great friends too. 

But what hurts me sometimes is that while I consider them real people, and start liking them genuinely (not necessarily in the romantic sort of way), for them, I don't really matter. 

And I don't blame them either - it's a virtual world after all. And it is completely my fault when I believe them that they will be around when I need to talk.  Maybe they even mean it.  But being the stubborn person that I am, I will never talk about things bothering me, unless someone is being persistent about it.  And I guess, the lack of physical proximity adds to the heartache.

That I feel hurt/jealous/sad by what people I've known through internet do or don't know shows I am paving my own way for sadness.

It is time I stop getting intimate with people.  Let me build an imaginary wall even for people in the virtual world. I don't want to get upset over actions of people for whom I don't really matter. (and it's not even their fault - it is totally my fault)


Thursday, September 6, 2012

I apologise

We do all kinds of stupid things when we are in school without usually thinking of the consequences.

One of the things I did was "tease" my friend, let's call her P with this guy, M.  I am not proud of those things, but it's a teenage phase and you just do such things.

While doing that, I used to mimic M's voice and call out P's name.  Everyone thought it was incredibly funny and I kept doing it so much that every time M would pass by, P would burst into laughter.  I always had a goofy smile stuck on my face all the time anyway, so anyone could mistake me for laughing at them.

I think it made M feel really bad, but the damage was done.  I got over the teasing bit, but others kept teasing P with M for years.

This was way back in 1998/99.  It has been over a decade and the guilt has not left me.  I have never been able to meet M's eyes.  As fate would have it, we were in same college, and were together during some part of Chartered Accountancy bit, but I would hang out with complete strangers or be by myself, but never approach him or acknowledge his presence.  The guilt of being a sort of "bully" was weighing down on me.

Today, he came up as "People you may know" option on Facebook.  We have 15 common friends. 

And then I did something which took a lot of courage.  I sent him a message on Facebook asking him to forgive me.  I apologised for being mean to him in school, because deep down I know that if I remember being mean, I am sure he remembered that I was mean to him.  I was a silly kid back then, and surely I deserve a chance to sleep with having one person less hating me.

He may circulate the mail amongst the common people we know and have a good laugh.  Yes, I am insecure and scared of being ridiculed, but deep down, I know I did the right thing. 

I don't expect us to become the best of friends.  Hell, we may not even become friends, but I feel incredibly lighter today. 

I hope someday, M reads this and realises I didn't mean any harm.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Take your mother out on a date

So the other day, I took mom out for coffee.

Our typical 'family outing' is with the three(or four/five if sister and brother in law are around) of us going to the regular restaurants we go, ordering the usual food.  Coffee never appeared on our list.

Sometime back, mom joked with me that I never take her out for coffee.


So, last Saturday, I took her out to Chocolate Room.

"Hot or cold?"

"No, I'll have cold coffee".

"Do you want to try the espresso?" I grinned.

"No, it would be too bitter", she said, making a face.

I was going through the menu to see what else she would like.  While suddenly she saw something in the kitchen.  I turned back to see what made her smile.  They were making someone's chocolate shake, in a giant glass, with whipped cream and a ferrero rocher on top of it.  She had the brightest twinkle in her eye.

"Do you want to order that?", I asked.

"What is that?" she smiled like a 3 year old.

"Chocolate shake, they have it for different chocolates, do you want one in Kitkat?" Kitkat is our family's favourite chocolate.

"Let's order one between the two of us, it's too big, I wont be able to finish", she said.

I ordered one Kitkat shake and a plate of nachos, so that we don't get sick of the sweetness in the shake, and also to break the taste.

As soon as our order came in, her face lit up.  It was almost as if the roles had reversed.  It wasn't a mother taking her daughter out for a treat, it was a daughter taking her mother out! She took the first sip and was delighted.  After taking a few sips, she offered it to me.  In total, I had some 3 sips from it and she finished off the entire chocolate shake! She was almost sad that she could not drink the last few drops of chocolate sauce which was stuck at the bottom of the glass.

The satisfied smile on her face made me realise how much it must have meant it to her.  And also made me wonder why I didn't bring her with me before!

I always thought she wouldn't want to come with me for coffee, but I guess, she was just waiting to be asked.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Please don't smoke

I'm allergic to smoke.

As a child, I don't remember celebrating Diwali bursting firecrackers.  I was invariably down with cough and cold because of the heavy smoke that would fill the air.  Even today, Diwali at home is a low key affair, with me usually down with cough and cold.

So I don't smoke either.

But I have friends and cousins who do.  When I asked a cousin to quit smoking, he said, 'I am not an addict, I can quit whenever I want to'.  That was five years back.  He now smokes at least 10 cigarettes a day.  Obviously, his will to quit smoking hasn't found a way to him.  Of course, smoking doesn't come alone, alcohol follows.

Last year during the Cricket World Cup finals, his friends had gathered, and he lost control of his drinking and started throwing up while his very pregnant wife had to clean up after him.  Oh, and he has no memories of him puking even in his sleep.  He rubbishes that incident saying all this never happened.  Denial.  He says he has quit drinking and smoking but he does enjoy going to the paan galla just down their apartment every evening and like to chew tobacco so that no one can know that he has had a smoke.

When you have to lie about your action, you know you are doing something wrong.

I have a few friends who smoke too.  Not addicts, but those who 'enjoy' it once in a while.  (oh, some are addicts too).  When you need a substance to feel good about something and generally get a "happy" feeling,  you need to talk about it.  There are friends who could listen and help you out.

I have tried telling them to quit smoking.  But then, they think I am their enemy and they start 'hiding' their smoking escapades.  I know, it is not my business to tell anyone what is good for them and what is not.  To each his own.

At times I wonder if I should stop telling my friends to quit smoking.  And by friends, I mean men and women both.  And then I feel, if I care about my friends, I want them to live longer, happier life, without any kind of substance in their bloodstream.

There are better, safer ways to get a high.  Be around happier people, you will need less of substances to keep you happy. 

So here is an appeal to everyone out there who smokes, please quit. 

Also, trust me, no girl (I can say only from a girl's perspective with complete authority) would want to kiss a guy who has stained teeth and smells like a chimney.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Middle Eastern Salad: Tabbouleh

I'm not a "foodie". I mean, I love food, but I usually stick to familiar flavours. I wouldn't experiment much with unknown flavours. So when a friend told me sometime back on how she made "Lebanese" food, I was little bit apprehensive on whether I'll like it or not. So she got me some to taste, and it was fab! I loved the flavours and thought of trying it out myself. 

And if you like simple flavours, you must try this out.

So I used cracked wheat (daliya), while the original recipe says bulgur.  I have no idea what bulgar is, but looked up over the internet and here's the difference. But you I didn't have bulgar (I keep typing it as burglar) and usd cracked wheat only. 

Now, before I could make this, my first challenge was to find fresh parsley.  Turns out it is the essence of the recipe.  The herb smells awesome and does bring out the flavour.  It's kind of sad that most of such herbs are not easily available in Ahmedabad. 

Anyway, so once I got the parsley, it was decided we'll have this for dinner. (along with left over daal chawal and bhakhri)

What will you need?

1 small bowl cracked wheat (or daliya)
loads of parsley
2/3 tomatoes
5-6 spring onions
3 spoons lemon juice
salt, pepper
2 spoons extra virgin olive oil

(yea, that's it - no other spices required - you can never go wrong with just salt and pepper, unless you have absolutely no sense of taste and put in way too much salt)

How will you make it?

Pressure cook the daliya.  For 1 bowl daliya, add little over 2 bowls water. ratio should be 1:2:25 type.  We don't want daliya to be runny.  Once they're cooked, you may want to put them in cold water, so that they are separated.  I just mixed them with a spoon and let them cool down, and they were okay.  Cut the tomatoes, spring onions and parsley.  You may also want to add fresh mint to it. I didn't add, because I didn't feel like.

Put all the veggies and greens in a bowl, add olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and mix.  There will be overwhelming smell of fresh herbs and pepper! I LOVE PEPPER! Anyway, once that's done, put the daliya in it and mix well.

Yeah, that's ready.

This salad is like revenge.  Best served cold. So put it in the fridge for about half an hour.

And it's called Tabbouleh.  I just call it cracked wheat salad. (I actually use the Gujarati word for cracked wheat - faada :P)

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Samudra Manthan : Live Tweet

Disclaimer: The post below is to be taken in good humour, and no offense meant to your religious beliefs. कृपया हमारा पुतला जलाये नहीं.

Once upon a time, Devas and Asuras, decide to churn the mighty ocean and solve once and for all the matter of supremacy.

Jesus, I see your turning water into wine, and raise churning of ocean with a mountain named Mandar acting as the churning rod and a snake, Vasuki acting as the churning rope.  Of course, once mountain started sinking, Vishnu takes form of a Turtle, Kurma and supports the mountain.

What if the Samudra Manthan happened during the times of Twitter?  What if they live-tweeted the event?  It will probably look like this:

@IndraRockz:  Abeyaar, this @D4Durvasa is way too sensitive. Only because of him we have to now churn the ocean.

@D4Durvasa: @IndraRockz #lulz

@MtMandar: Yo, @Vasuki, mount me. #IAmDecent

@Vasuki: *hiss*

@DevasRulez: We have checked into @MtMandar with @_Asuras_ Let the churning begin. *dibs on holding the tail of @Vasuki*

@MtMandar: Whoa, luks lyk u r njoing a lot, here, take this #Halahal

@DevasRulez: We're not taking #Halahal

@_Asuras_: neither are we, cc. @Vishnu RT @DevasRulez: We're not taking #Halahal

@Vishnu: @_Asuras_ @DevasRulez wait yougaiz, let me ask @ShivasRegal for help, he's awesome that way.

@ShivasRegal: @Vishnu Y U NOOO TRY SOME YOURSELF?

@Vishnu: @ShivasRegal Poda.

@ShivasRegal: @Vishnu Okfiiiine. Give me #Halahal on the rocks.

@Paro: @ShivasRegal Swamy pls, don't drink too much.

@ShivasRegal: @Paro If you say so, darling, not a drop will go down the throat.

@ShivasRegal: ZOMG. MY THROAT IS TURNING BLUE! #HumAwesomeHai

@Paro ♥ @ShivasRegal: ZOMG. MY THROAT IS TURNING BLUE! #HumAwesomeHai

@Vasuki: Yougaiz, are you gonna keep churning or should I go home now? *hissss*

@_Asuras_ @Vasuki Abeyaar, when did you last brush your fangs? 

@_Asuras_: Whoa! Look at all these awesome things coming out! *dibs on Varuni - all booze on the house* *shows thenga to @Sujej*

@Vishnu: Yo, Lakshmi, #comeoffraa

@DevasRules: Heh, *dibs on the Apsaras*

@Vishnu: I'm taking Kamdhenu, so that years later, her progeny can roam on the streets of India laying fresh warm dung. ♥

@IndraRockz: I think elephants are cute, Airu, come to me.

@_Asuras_: WHOA! 7 headed horse! HOW COOL IS THAT! Uchhaishravas, you come with us.

@Vishnu: I love shiny objects, I'm taking the jewels.

@DevasRules: Parijat tree comes with us, Our wives love the smell.


@DrDhanvantari: I HAVE ARRIVED! *looks lovingly at pot of Amrut*

After this, no one live tweeted the event because they all got busy fighting it off on who will drink the nectar of immortality? So Garuda came and took off with the kumbha (pot) and very cleverly dropped 4 drops at 4 different places, so that Kumbh Mela could be held every 12 years and could act as wonderful background story for zillion Hindi movies.

(The above post is inspired from @mishrashiv's absolutely hilarious blog in Hindi. The references of Samudra Manthan taken from it's Wikipedia page. )

Thursday, August 2, 2012



Today is one such day when I feel low.  This is despite having two ferrero rocher chocolates.  Guess after some point, even chocolate can't lift your spirits up. 

And sometimes the problem is, even though you want to call up someone and talk, there is no one who wants to listen to you.  You fight your battles alone. All alone.

I'm kinda sad such kind of post makes an appearance every few days on the blog.  The frequency has increased.  Does that mean my defense mechanism is failing? Isn't denial an answer to all life's problems?

I can't be weak.


Also, all those who Google "Nirwa Mehta" and land on the blog, who are you guys? What is it that you're looking for? Also, the blog url is so easy, how come you don't remember? Why do you have to Google it every time?

So guys, if you again Google the name, and reach here, how about saying hi? Drop in a comment, or send me a mail? <3 p="p">
Anyway, I'll go sleep now, hopefully, tomorrow will be better.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Tomato Rice

Fresh tomatoes and home grown mint.
When we were kids, my Grandma used to make something called "Ketchup Pulao".  It was nothing but adding tomato ketchup to pulao, which had onion and potatoes.  It has been almost 15 years since I last tasted that.  She wasn't keeping well for a few years before she passed away in 2004.  She never told anyone the recipe (which I am sure was something she cooked up on the go, with whatever ingredients were in the house, without all the fancy herbs.  I'm sure she didn't even know what thyme and parsley is) and so in a way, the dish died with her.  I can still remember the flavour of onion, which had become sweet on being fried in ghee with some cumin seeds tadka.  I once tried recreating the recipe some years back, and failed miserably.

I had been craving for her pulao since sometime now, and though I know I couldn't create what she did, I looked up some recipes online.  Of course, I didn't have the fancy herbs at home, but had the basic tomatoes and onions and capsicum.  Good enough.  Plus, Mom has grown some mint in the garden.  If the peacock, whom I consider my Mom's adopted son, and also inheritor of 1/3rd of the jaaydaat, leaves some mint after feasting on it, we use the remaining for tea.  I felt like putting some mint in my "Tomato Rice" (because pulao sounds too desi, and I'm cool like that) and quickly went and plucked some pretty fresh leaves, as shown above.  An hour of hard work (I'm slow) and burning my hand with super hot tomatoes (a girl can be only that careful) wonderful Tomato Rice was ready to be consumed.

So what went into creating this masterpiece? And how I created the magic? ZOMG. I am so modest! Please read the rest of the post so that I can rub some of my awesome cooking skills to you.

Awesome Tomato Rice garnished with Fresh Mint

Basically, to cook something, you need to love food.  Unless you can differentiate between the sourness of tomato and that of lemon, you should only do one thing with food: eat.

So what I used as ingredients.

1.  7-8 tomatoes (I used 7, blanched, removed skin and then made puree with a blender, super easy)
2.  3 Onions (finely chopped)
3.  1 Capsicum (chopped in thin slices - now, I only had 1 green capsicum at home.  You may want to add yellow and red for colour)
4.  1 cup rice.  (basically, 7 tomatoes make roughly 1 cup puree - you need as much rice as you make puree. ok?  Also, I used basmati rice.)
5.  1 cup boiling water. (yeah, ratio between rice and tomato puree+water = 1:2/2.25, depending on how much water it needs to cook your rice.)
6.  Bunch of fresh mint leaves.
7.  1 spoon olive oil. (it adds to flavour, really)
8.  Salt (स्वादानुसार ) and chilli flakes (3 spoons, or again स्वादानुसार )
Now, I wanted to add corn in it too, because I love corn, but there was no corn at home. :( Some recipes I looked up online also added fancy herbs like thyme and parsley and basil. Didn't have any, so meh.  But add herbs if you like the flavours, I wish I had basil though. <3

How I cooked?

Wash rice and soak them.  You'll need them in about half an hour.

Blanch the tomatoes - bring water to boil and drop in the tomatoes.  Once the skin starts coming off, remove and put them in cold water.  That will ensure you don't burn your hands while trying to remove the skin.  Also, you may want to let them cool down.  I don't have patience, and my palms feel little raw right now. Anyway, once that's done, use a blender and make a puree.

In a pan, put some olive oil.  Once it heats up, add onion and capsicum, and let them cook.  Also add the herbs.  Enjoy the flavours and smell. <3

Add salt, and chilli flakes and mix well.

Remove water from rice and add to the pan.  Now, mix slowly.  You don't want to break the rice, especially if you're using the long grained basmati rice. <3  Enjoy the smell.

Add the tomato puree and boiling water to it and mix well.  Bring it to a boil and then cook it on a slow flame while covering the pan.  Should take about 6-7 minutes.

Now, you may want to check it after 4-5 minutes to ensure the rice hasn't stuck to the pan.

So while I was cooking, the rice was still little uncooked but it was sticking to the pan.  I panicked.  So I put the rice in a microwave safe bowl, and cooked it in microwave oven for about 4 minutes with a closed lid.  After sometime, I could still see it looked little liquidy, and I worried it may end up being some disgusting soupy rice. :(

Kids, this is where mothers come to your rescue.  She told me how it was okay, and sprinkled some magic water (it was plain water, but I'm sure there was some magic element to it - mothers are awesome that way) and microwaved it for another 5 minutes.  AND IT WAS DONE!

You may want to let it rest for a while, like 10 minutes or so before serving.  Because I don't like things served piping hot - it burns the tongue and you can't feel any flavours after the first spoonful.

So that's it - my tribute to my Grandma's recipe.  My Tomato Rice was awesome, even if I say so myself, but it was still nothing compared to her "Ketchup Pulao". :'( I MISS HER!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

So the other day my 2.5 year old niece visited.  She's adorable.  Sadly, she's reaching the danger bracket of annoying kids.  I will skip that part, but will tell you how she's incredibly cute.

So I had gone to drop them off at their place, which is a good 30 minute drive in traffic, but because I love her, I'll go an extra mile for her.  Her mother, my cousin's wife, asked me to go up to their apartment, but I kind of ignored.  Mostly because I like being by myself, and making a small talk with my uncle is a pain because he's kinda annoying.

But then, the kid asked, "Ninu, tu ghar aav ne' (meaning, Ninu, Y U NOOO COME UP?)  and it's hard for me to break someone's heart like that.  So I kind of gave in to her cuteness and oh god, she played with me so much.  Let's just say if she were 20 years older, all that she did with me would've been considered domestic violence.  But then, when she said, "Ninu, I love you", my heart kind of melted, and I let her continue what she was doing for some more time.

In other news, I've managed to alienate more of my relatives by pretending I'm not home and staying locked up in my room for 4 hours while they sat downstairs and kept asking for my whereabouts.  I felt bad for my Mom, because she cannot lie, and she had a tough time making up new excuses why I've not yet come home, while I was busy losing myself in the mystical world of internet.

In last one week, I've been called 'a brave girl' by a few people for having fought my CA exam battles which I still have to pass. I just wish the bravery was enough to get me the bloody degree.  When I cried like one mad woman, my dad was being super supportive of me on how at other times of crisis, I've been the strong one to hold the family together and how I cannot be weak.  It made me cry even more, because that was the first time my dad ever said anything good about me. Ah, well.

You still wonder why I am emotionally unstable?

Anyway, decided to get discipline back into life.  Which means, trying to wake up and sleep at a normal time, and stop being a stupid owl.  Lately, the neighbourhood uncle, who has insomnia, tries to have a small chat with me in middle of the night.  Which is creepy because he shouts from his balcony, while I am happily watching a crime drama, and only says one thing, "So jaa". Dude, YOU GO SLEEP.  It's kind of freaky when someone tells that in middle of a crime drama, especially when the psycho killer has been hiding in the bushes.  Anyway, I digress.

Coming back to discipline in life, I'm going to wake up early tomorrow.  I've set an alarm for 5:30 am.  Which means that since it's almost 1 am, I should sleep, but then, the anxiety of waking up early is not letting me sleep. I'm kind of cool that way.

Anyway, since I have nothing more to say to this, and I'm pretty awful with ending posts or whatever, I'll just say, kbai.


Thursday, July 19, 2012

Questions, questions.

So you think, "shaadi kab karogi/karoge?" is the worst question you have to answer every time you meet your relatives?

Try answering, "iss baar bhi clear nahin hua?"

Or, "abhi bhi CA kar rahi hai?"

Yeah, yeah, give them benefit of doubt, on how they don't know that even if you clear everything at one go, it takes easily 5 years to clear. Or that they don't know how tough the course is.  Or they are just idiots.

The fact that I have to answer such questions with an awkward laughter makes me desperate to leave this city.  Oh, go ahead, smirk that I am trying to run away from problems.  You are not on the receiving end of accusatory glances.

As if I had gone out of my way to flunk.

Listen. I don't know what goes wrong.  When the exams got over this time in May, I told my Dad if I pass in Direct Taxes paper, I'll pass.  I was so desperately praying that I get 40/100 in Direct Taxes because I was very hopeful for rest of papers.  I got 53 in Direct Taxes.  I didn't clear any of the remaining 3 papers.  Last time, I had cleared all, missed out on aggregate.

Institute of Chartered Accountants of India thinks it's God.  Working in mysterious ways. But no, it sucks. (heh, pls don't debar me. I'm just angry and venting, ok?)

And of course, everyone has a suggestion on how I can clear it next time.  The best is joining a coaching class.  Now I have nothing against coaching classes.  But all these years, I have not taken a single tuition.  I have cleared all my CA exams till now without attending coaching classes.  How come my achievements till today are overlooked over the fact I didn't clear exam this time? It's not that I got marks in single digits.

There is nothing new the coaching classes can teach me.  "But you'll get a discipline", they say.  According to them, attending crash batch, where I sit for 10 hours in one room, where my mind gets distracted because I already know what the tutor is teaching will be less fruitful than me practicing on my own.  And honestly, if I don't decide to bring discipline to my life, no coaching class will be able to do that. I'm kinda stubborn that way. Not something I'm proud of.


I'm annoyed.  I'm angry.  And I've been crying all day today.  So much that my eyes are burning now and I should probably sleep.  But yes, I could do with a kind word or two! :'(

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

God Particle की कहानी

शिवजी और पार्वतीजी कैलासपरबत पर बैठ कर चाय की चुस्कियां भर रहे थे। गर्मी ने नंदीजी की हालत बेहाल कर राखी थी। देवों के देव, महादेव अपने चिल्लम में से एक कश लिए।
पार्वतीजी बोली, "स्वामी, यह god particle  क्या होता है?"
शिवजी मुस्कुराये और बोले, "प्रिये, जब हमने यह सृष्टि का सर्जन किया था, तब हमने इंसानों को confuse करने के लिए procedure  को document  नहीं किया था।  आज सदियों बाद उनको लगता है की उन्हें पता चला है की हमने दुनिया कैसे बनायीं होगी।"
पार्वतीजी बोली, "स्वामी,  लेकिन आपने ऐसा क्यूँ किया? अपने भक्तो को परेशां करने में आपको बड़ा मज़ा आता है।"
शिवजी की गर्दन पे लिपटा सांप फुर्राया और हलके से मुस्कुराया।
शिवजी बोले, "प्रिये, आज हम आपको एक विशेष टिप्पनी देना चाहते है। दुनिया में ऐसी कई चीज़े है जिनका राज़ सबको नहीं पता होता। उनको जानना ज़रूरी भी नहीं होता। कई बार चीज़े हम पर छोडनी चाहिए। इंसान हममें विश्वास करे या न करे, हम सब देख रहे है। उन्हें सिर्फ थोड़े और विश्वास की ज़रूरत है।"
पार्वतीजी बोली, "आपके तरीके तो मेरे समझ के बहार है।"
शिवजी मुस्कुराये और कहा, "कई बार मेरे तरीके मेरे भी समझ के बहार है। जैसा मैंने कहा, हर रहस्य जानना ज़रूरी नहीं है।"  

Friday, June 29, 2012

khaana kha ke jaana

So this school friend of mine is getting married tomorrow.  Well, technically, today.  I've been attending her pre-wedding functions since monday and let me say, I am blinded by all the bling I have witnessed in past few days.  She's a Sindhi, and with all due respect to the community, there is only this much bling my eyes can take. 

Not that it's a bad thing.  Gujarati weddings are also colourful affairs.  Just that we have less bling, and more colours.  I, personally do not like dressing up.  I am usually the odd one out at most weddings, with simple cotton dress and some kajal as makeup.  Last few days I felt so out of place, I was hiding myself in the corners because I thought everyone will keep staring at me for wearing something so simple.

In the meantime, one grandma was chatting up with me in Sindhi for good 10 minutes before friend's mother pointed out that I don't understand the language, and I think she cursed me before ignoring me completely for the rest of the function. 

And then the dance.  These guys just do not get tired.  Yesterday, at one point, everyone broke into a Garba, and the only Gujarati under the roof was sitting in one corner, tweeting how everyone is dancing on Garba beats.  That is how socially awkward I am. :|

And then, today was the "ring ceremony".  I have learnt my lesson in past few days that none of the functions start on time.  If they say 7:30 pm onwards, it means if you reach at 7:45, you will be the one supervising the hotel staff in arranging chairs.  Family will also come in fashionably at 9:00 and the bride and groom make a grand entrance at 10:00 pm.  Abbe, khana kab khilaoge?

So today, for the 7:30 pm onwards wala function, I went at 8:30.  I had a talk with friend's sister who gave me directions to the venue.  As soon as I was parking, I see a couple of people getting off a taxi, wearing heavy dress get off.  I quickly parked the car and followed them.

As usual, I could not find the family members or one or two familiar faces I saw daily.  I looked around, and then found myself a secluded corner and made myself comfortable.  I looked up my twitter timeline, and generally acted busy.  We all know the benefit of smartphone.  I was offered watermelon juice and some vegetable crispies, which I devoured.  Hmm.  And then, it hit me.  Everyone around me was talking in Gujarati.

Wait, what?


Panic attack.  What? Where am I! No bling bling outfits, but red, green, yellow bandhanis. (pls google bandhani - it's a lovely saree style). I quickly put the watermelon juice on the floor and walked out.  I called up friend's sister, and asked her where they were.  She told me they had already reached and the function was about to start.  She almost laughed while asking if I got lost again.  I said no, because I was in the premises of the stupid hotel. 

And then I saw it.  I was attending "40th wedding anniversary of Jayantilal and Maniben Patel".  Ring ceremony of my friend was in *another* banquet hall, next to the one in. 


I had half mind to go and wish Mr. and Mrs. Patel on their achievement, but I could not get over the fact that I had just gatecrashed a party. :|

Of course, the rest of the party that I attended was of my friend, which was fun.  Except for the part where they were playing "happy birthday to you" instrumental when they were exchanging rings.  Turns out only I noticed the song and no one else found it funny.

On that note, I will watch You've Got Mail, again, while munching peanuts, because after those vegetable crispies, I was too shocked to eat anything there.  And I'm hungry, and I don't want to go and make maggi right now.

Sunday, June 24, 2012


So like every other post of mine, this is not going to make much sense.

You know what has been my problem? I don't talk.  No, I mean, I do talk. A lot.  But I rarely talk what is going on deep in my mind.  What has been bothering me. What is wrong with my life.  Yes, career part aside, which is driving me crazy anyway, there is a part of me, the secluded corner of my heart which even I rarely visit.

Even when I do, I want to shut itself up, and pretend as if everything is all right.  Yes, I like to pretend that it will all be good, and I am too coward to face "it".  Someday I will gather up the courage to face my fears, but I don't see it happening all by myself.  I guess I like to pretend that I am strong enough to take care of myself, but deep inside, I know I want an emotional support.

Yes, everyone tells me to talk whatever I feel like, but life would've been so much simpler if I just listened to them.

Give me that trust that whatever I say, you will not judge me.  That you will not abandon me.  That you will just listen.  I don't want to talk about my fears to an anonymous person.  Not just a screen name, but a real person.  Even writing this has taken up a lot of courage. 

I'd like someone to ask me what is bothering me, and not give up asking till I give in and pour my heart out.  I need the reassurance that you will not run away.  Like everyone else has.  And I'd like that friend to come into my life now.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


Dear People of India,

This is with respect to the current political scenario which has been bothering us for a while now.  With 2014 elections 2 years away, who will become the Prime Minister is the question everyone has been asking.  Will it be Narendra Modi vs Rahul Gandhi? What will happen to the ambitions of Sushma Swaraj? Will L. K. Advani again put himself up as one of the candidates? Last question is the nightmare which gives me sleepless nights.

Hence, to put an end to the all consuming question, let me take this opportunity to declare my candidature for the CEO of the great country that is India.

Please find attached herewith my resume for your kind perusal. 


I, Nirwa Mehta, will swear in the name of God/solemnly affirm that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of India as by law established, that I will uphold the sovereignty and integrity of India, that I will faithfully and conscientiously discharge my duties as Prime Minister for the Union and that I will do right to all manner of people in accordance with the Constitution and the law, without fear or favour, affection or ill-will.

I, Nirwa Mehta, will swear in the name of God/solemnly affirm that I will not directly or indirectly communicate or reveal to any person or persons any matter which shall be brought under my consideration or shall become known to me as Prime Minister for the Union except as may be required for the due discharge of my duties as such Minister.

Educational Qualifications: I am soon going to be a qualified Chartered Accountant.  Having interned in one of the Big Four auditing and assurance firms, I know how accounts are cooked.  I also know how country's accounts are cooked.  It's time we clean up the mess in the kitchen. (I also love wordplay)

I am also a partly qualified lawyer, but I believe bookish knowledge is bullshit, and zindagi ke paath, koi kitaab nahin padhaati.

Work Experience:
  • I have been active on Twitter even before the first Indian on Twitter created the account.
  • I have successfully managed to spread awareness about the colours of Indian National Flag amongst the ignorant journalists.  One Goose thought it is Orange instead of Saffron. *smirks*
  • Wrote letters to people of prominence in politics, like Narendra Modi and Shashi Tharoor and got them to call me and answer my questions about the fate of the Nation.  I not only make noise, I also get people to answer my questions.
  • I come from the Land of Gandhi (Mahatma, not Rahul) and Modi (Narendra, not Lalit) and have the best of both their values. I know I can successfully lead the nation to progress with my amazing administrative skills coupled with my belief in non-violence and truth.  What more, the the residential colony where I live is also called "Satyagraha Chhawani".   I was born to be awesome.
  • I've never been the heir apparent.  I've only had apparent hair.  Ok, that does not make sense, but I want to say, the post of the Prime Minister is not a khaandaani parampara.  I'd rather get khaandaani kangan when I get married, but that's that. I have *earned* this post, because I'm awesome that way.
  • I am not afraid to take a stand on matters pertaining to national importance.  That means, I am not afraid tell everyone I'm awesome. And that I'm cute.  ♥_♥
  • The only Italian I like is food.
Personal Details:

Name: Nirwa Mehta
DoB: 4th February, 1986 (I love surprise gifts)
Nationality: Indian

Hence, dear people of the great nation called India, do consider my candidature for the post of the Prime Minister and follow the campaign on Twitter with the hashtag #Nirwa4PM

So, vote for me, because even my Mom thinks so.


ps - the objective is the Oath for the post of the Prime Minister, copied from Wikipedia.  Jimmy Jimmy Jimmy, Aaja Aaja Aaja. \m/

Inspired by conversation with @realslimswamy

Friday, June 15, 2012

Taiyari kiski?

So Bournvita has come up with a couple of ads like this, where the kid is taking part in some kind of sport, where he is testing his own limits by more and more practice.  The children are constantly practicing, either as a gymnast or a basketball player and their mother is looking on.  After falling or missing the baskets a couple of times, the kid would say something like to the effect of how they are not tired of practicing, because their mummy tells them how they must be persistent in practicing and should not give up till they succeed.

Now, this idea is a bit disturbing.  The more I see these ads on tv, the more disturbed I get, because a brown powder, which in my opinion just changes colour of milk and makes it taste little chocolatey and sugary, is talking how important winning is.  Being an average person is not acceptable in society, being an achiever is not good enough, and how everyone should be an overachiever.

Assuming grown ups are not fond of milk and how this product's target audience is children *and* their mothers, I think it is unfair to be asking for too much from children like that.

I did not have an exceptional childhood.  It mostly consisted of coming home from school at 4, watching tv till 6, finishing homework, watch more tv and sleep.  When I was a kid, our place was considered outskirts of city, and we had very few neighbours, and hardly anyone my age.  Sister had already discovered internet and I was just the annoying younger sister.  But I went cycling, played chess with grandma (where she let me win because I have always been cute, and no one wants to see a cute girl cry) and read "champak".  I have also been an average performer till 10th, and scored well in boards and have done better ever since.  But I don't remember my parents telling me how I *need* to excel in everything I do.

Yes, dad did get upset once when I scored 44/100 in social studies once in 8th, which I am not proud of, but after telling me, 'take care next time', he let me be, and I scored 71/100 in finals, because I tried hard. (in my defense, highest marks in former exams in entire class was 51, and our school was strict in that way, highest scorer hardly scored more than 65/100, because they wanted to keep us grounded. whatever logic)  I scored the highest in that term.  There was no pressure on me from parents to score.  I did it because I knew I could have, it was just that I was lazy.  C'mon, you are 14 years old, big deal if you score less, no? not the end of world.

Today, when I see my younger cousins I feel sad.  Not only because they are Hannah Montana fangirls and want to show cleavage at 13, and put on loud make up, but also because their parents want them to be the first in their class.  If the mother is expecting her daughter should score 90 marks in maths, and if she scores 84, the mother requests for rechecking of paper to class teacher because she believes that her daughter should have scored 90 only.  My parents never fought with the teacher, mostly because they trusted the teachers know what they are doing, and if i didn't get marks, it was perhaps because I was wrong.

Today, parents don't want to accept their child could go wrong, that way, they end up putting the pressure on the kid that they have to live up to their parents' expectations.

Is it that important to win, always? Is it so bad to fail? Is it that bad to be average?